Sharon Henderson Callahan, Ed.D.

Professor Emerita


  • Ed.D. Seattle University. Dissertation: "A Delphi Study of Leadership Competencies Needed by Leaders of Roman Catholic Faith Communities in Western Washington Through the Year 2000."
  • MA Adult Faith Community Development, Regis University, Denver. MA Thesis: "A Study of Luke incorporating narrative theologies techniques and insights."
  • MA Speech and Drama, Ball State University, IN. MA Thesis Project: "Eugene Ionesco's Bald Soprano- a multi-media production of theatre of the absurd."
  • BFA in Drama, Fort Wright College.

Examples of Courses Taught

  • Theology of Pastoral Leadership I, II
  • Fostering Communities of Faith
  • Ministry in a Multicultural Context
  • Transformational Leadership
  • Integration of Transformational Leadership for Justice I, II
  • M.Div. Synthesis

Research Areas

  • Leadership in ecumenical, interreligious and multicultural contexts
  • Women in Leadership and Women in Religious Leadership
  • Celtic spirituality
  • Theology of Inculturation

Selected Publications

  • Religious Leadership: A Reference Handbook http://www.sagepub.com/booksProdDesc.nav?prodId=Book235989
  • Roman Catholic Polity and Leadership http://arl-jrl.org/Volumes/CE06.pdf
  • Leadership in Ecclesial Contexts: Integration of Art and Competence http://arl-jrl.org/Volumes/CallahanFA03.pdf
  • Shifting Images of Church Invite New Leadership Frames http://arl-jrl.org/Volumes/CallahanSP02.pdf
  • Editor Sage Handbook for Religious Leadership. 2 volumes. June 2013.
  • Editor Team for Journal for Religious Leadership http://arl-jrl.org 
  • ROMAN CATHOLIC POLITY AND LEADERSHIP, with James Eblen. http://www.arl-jrl.org/page5.html
  • Leadership in Ecclesial Contexts: Integration of Art and Competence. http://www.arl-jrl.org/page5.html 
  • Shifting Images of Church Invite New Leadership Frames. http://www.arl-jrl.org/page5.html 
  • SALT- Scripture and Leadership Training. Contributor and editor of this three year course of study embracing Hebrew and Christian Scriptures that integrates preparation for lay leadership. Edited and field tested in four languages: Spanish, Chinese, Vietnamese, and English. www.seattleu.edu/stm/salt


  • WABASH grant for Academic Deans in theological education
  • Called and Gifted Award- Association of Graduate Programs in Ministry (AGPIM)
  • First Visiting Faculty initiating faculty/ CRS collaboration in Kenya - 2004
  • Association of Theological Schools –Theological Scholars Grant
  • Seattle University Summer Multimedia Faculty Grant
  • Association of Theological Schools Women in Leadership grant

Personal Bio

I've lived in the Greater Seattle area most of my life. During my years in pastoral ministry in the Archdiocese of Seattle, I yearned for the Seattle University Institute (at that time) to make theological education and ministerial preparation available to people outside the immediate Seattle area. After being asked to apply for a position that would help the School do just that kind of outreach, I submitted my resume, entered into a series of interviews and was offered the position of Director of Regionalization. I've been at Seattle University almost 19 years!

My work in the public sector as a banker, computer programmer, and trust administrator, as well as my positions of Pastoral Associate combine with my love for teaching. I'm practical, connected to the broader church, and attempt to encourage students to integrate theological insights with immediate practical implication. My research agenda is relatively broad within a specific focus on how to prepare leaders for an increasingly diverse world.

Since beginning my tenure at Seattle University, I have traveled to many parts of Europe, Kenya, the Philippines, Taiwan, Mexico, Central America, and Vietnam. I work with people on translations and cultural adaptations of scripture studies (SALT) in Spanish, Chinese, and Vietnamese, as well as English. I continue to explore the impact of technology on Christian community development, educational opportunity, and ways of thinking and learning. I integrate music, prayer, kinesthetic learning, technology, mini-immersion experiences, reading, "drama", and lecture in my teaching. Mostly I'm interested in people finding a way to deepen their own insights, expand their toolkits, and engage difference with grace.